Irvine Teens Give Underprivileged Kids a Valuable Tool

Photo credit: John Gilhooley

University High School students Katherine McPhie, 17, left, and Milan Narula, 16, were separately volunteering at homeless shelters when they realized disadvantaged children might be left behind technologically. Last year, they joined to create Open Sesame Coding for Kids, an award-winning service organization that recruits and trains high school and college students to teach computer skills to underserved children in homeless and domestic violence shelters. “We really want these kids to feel like they have options,” Katherine says. “Just to have their confidence grow in feeling like they can do this … that’s really empowering.”

Organizations that partner with Open Sesame to recruit volunteers

Growing number of volunteers, from 12 schools

Hours of coding instruction provided to children so far

Shelters across six O.C. cities that receive coding and computer skills clinics

Homeless schoolchildren in Orange County

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